General Introduction 
General Introduction
by Yale / Keith Wrightson
Video Lecture 1 of 25
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Date Added: June 15, 2011

Lecture Description

Professor Wrightson provides an introduction to the course. He briefly discusses the main features of the political and social landscape of early modern England and then summarizes the broad social and structural changes that occurred during the period. Professor Wrightson offers some thoughts on the nature of history and the study of history and focuses, in particular, on the benefits of studying the history of early modern England. He notes that the history of Britain in this period affected many other nations, such as early America and Canada, as well as later colonies such as those in Africa and India, and that studying these events helps us to better understand ourselves in time and contextualize many of the features of modern society that we take for granted.

Course Index

Course Description

This course is intended to provide an up-to-date introduction to the development of English society between the late fifteenth and the early eighteenth centuries. Particular issues addressed in the lectures will include: the changing social structure; households; local communities; gender roles; economic development; urbanization; religious change from the Reformation to the Act of Toleration; the Tudor and Stuart monarchies; rebellion, popular protest and civil war; witchcraft; education, literacy and print culture; crime and the law; poverty and social welfare; the changing structures and dynamics of political participation and the emergence of parliamentary government.

Course Structure:
This Yale College course, taught on campus twice per week for 50 minutes, was recorded for Open Yale Courses in Fall 2009.

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